Wabi Sabi....no, not the spicy stuff in Japanese foods

While sitting in a waiting room the other day I was reading a Woman's Day magaizne and came across an article titled Wabi Sabi: Making Peace With Imperfection. Right up my alley I thought. I'm so good at imperfection. I wish I had snatched the magazine but I'm a good girl and don't steal from the doctor's office. But now that I think about it, they do get a lot of our money. Oh well, I found a shorter version of it online here if you want to read it. It's pretty funny too.

Wabi Sabi is a concept that originated in Japan with their tea ceremonies. It is simply, learning to accept and find beauty in the imperfections of people and things.

Here is a quote from the book Wabi Sabi: The Art of Everyday Life.
“Through the centuries, wabi sabi came to mean an approach to life and art that is in harmony with nature, one that values the handmade and rustic, and recognizes the impermanence of life. It encourages us to be respectful of age, both in things and in ourselves, and it counsels us to be content with what we have rather than always striving for more. Wabi sabi has a hint of wistfulness about it.”

There is also a book called The Wabi-Sabi House. It offers tips for decorating with salvaged materials and vintage furnishings, advice on how to rediscover the joy of crafting and simple solutions for clearing clutter and blocking noise.

I have been practicing Wabi Sabi and I didn't even know it! Or at least I've been trying to. There is so much beauty in the old, worn and imperfect. It is not to be discarded. It is meant to be displayed and admired.

The article in the magazine listed 8 things we can do to incorporate Wabi Sabi into our lives.
1) Use what you have, 2) Make wabi-sabi friends, 3) Do your best at work--within reason, 4) Cook recipes from your childhood, 5) Relax your housekeeping standards, 6) Practice the art of hanging out, 7) When you drink tea, drink tea, and 8) Remember that life doesn't go on forever.

Some of these things I have down pat. Number 5 might be one of them. But number 7 is something I need work with as I'm sure many of you out there try to multi task. But try to slow down and concentrate on the one things you are trying to accomplish. Even if it's as simple as drinking a cup of tea. Harder to do when you have little ones at home I know. Number 8 is something we are so abruptly reminded of when we lose someone we love but I try to always remember it and then life becomes that much sweeter.

So go forth my thrifty shoppers. Find something old, cracked and full of patina. Bring it home and show it a little love. Or dig something you already have out of the back of the closet. Look in the mirror and smile when you see a wrinkle. Or laugh if your arm waves back when you wave at someone. Dishes in the sink? That's okay. Pour yourself a cup of tea or open a Corona and breathe. It's all good. It's Wabi Sabi.


  1. Great post. I really like the idea of making Wabi Sabi friends. I think that's what many of us have begun to do through our blogs. Thanks for sharing.

  2. I agree with Maureen, great post. I subscribe to Woman's Day and I am months behind in reading them but I will be on the lookout for the article.

  3. But, what if I'm the old thing, cracked and full of patina?
    Oh, forget it- just hand me the Corona!

  4. Hmmm, maybe we should start with a Corona or two THEN look in the mirror. Things might look better!

  5. Hi Anita!
    it's nice to meet a fellow imperfect! did you know all the world was full of them! lol

    i smiled in the mirror today looking at yet another grey hair that's decided to take root on my head! lol
    life is good..it's all in how we look at it!

    come by and see me sometime!
    ciao bella
    creative carmelina was here!

  6. Hi Anita,
    I read that same article you mentioned, and I LOVE the idea! In fact, I see Wabi Sabi every time I look in the mirror! Although I have yet to embrace the wrinkles and "imperfections"! Love the philosophy though!

  7. Anita, nice to meet you! This is a great post, I'm always trying to not strive for perfection to the point of madness.

    As for my soffits, they are still intact as nothing has been done yet. We're a little overextended on the 'home projects' front. ha!


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